President Donald Trump on Monday responded to White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders getting kicked out of a Virginia restaurant where the owner expressed concerns about serving someone affiliated with the administration.
The president, on Twitter, attacked the Red Hen restaurant in Lexington, Virginia, as “filthy” and “dirty” for “refusing to serve a fine person” like his spokeswoman.
The Red Hen Restaurant should focus more on cleaning its filthy canopies, doors and windows (badly needs a paint job) rather than refusing to serve a fine person like Sarah Huckabee Sanders. I always had a rule, if a restaurant is dirty on the outside, it is dirty on the inside!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 25, 2018
“Last night I was told by the owner of Red Hen in Lexington, VA to leave because I work for
@POTUS and I politely left,” Sanders tweeted Saturday. “Her actions say far more about her than about me. I always do my best to treat people, including those I disagree with, respectfully and will continue to do so.”
Stephanie Wilkinson, owner of the small restaurant, told The Washington Post that her staff, some of whom are gay, had issues with serving Sanders. Wilkinson took Sanders outside, telling her that her restaurant has “certain standards that I feel it has to uphold, such as honesty, and compassion and cooperation.”
She said Sanders left immediately without making a scene.
Walter Shaub, the former head of the U.S. Office of Government Ethics, accused Sanders of violating ethics laws because her tweet called out a business by name with the intent of personal gain or retaliation.
Shaub on Monday blasted Trump for devoting attention to “the vengeful destruction of a rural eatery” instead of tending to presidential duties.
“Stealing babies and children made him hurt less, but the little things helped too,” Shaub said, taking aim at the Trump administration’s zero tolerance immigration policy that was separating migrant children from their parents at the border until Trump’s reversal last week.
Last year, Trump’s own Mar-a-Lago Club in Florida was reportedly cited for its highest-ever number of health code violations.